Report: RFID Tide Turning?

Another encouraging dispatch from the RFID front: Nearly three-quarters of second-generation RFID users report better read rates and are more confident that their technology won’t soon become obsolete.

The research report, from Boston-based technology researcher Aberdeen Group, says that 50% of enterprises report that they will have anywhere between two and 10 of their manufacturing sites RFID-enabled by 2008, The planned growth is forcing companies to create strategies to better integrate RFID technologies into their overall enterprise technical infrastructure.

“The RFID Benchmark Series: Scaling RFID Implementations from Pilot to Production,” report finds that more than half of the manufacturers surveyed have automated or will automate their RFID tagging processes in the next 24 months by integrating with manufacturing execution and material handling systems, as well as programmable logic controllers (PLC).

“For the first time, reliability of RFID technology trumped cost as the leading consideration in RFID technology selection,” says John Fontanella, senior vice president of research for Aberdeen, “That tells me companies expect RFID to be an integral part of operations going into the future.”

Key findings in the research, underwritten by BEA Systems, Odin Technologies, Reva Systems, and Xterprise, demonstrate the challenges of scaling up RFID implementations and also how companies overcome them are:
* RFID middleware is evolving. An increasing number of companies plan on using network appliances and smart readers to manage RFID technology and administrative processes.

* Survey participants most aggressively adopting the RFID agree that scalability and interoperability with other enterprise technologies was crucial to its expanded use.

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